If you’re like me you grew up spending the holidays with your extended family at your grandparents house. Rather than trying to manage multiple houses and meals in one day, we split our holidays up.
Growing up, this Sweet Potato Souffle was only served at my maternal grandmother’s house for holiday gatherings. As soon as I was old enough to bake and take items to family functions, my contribution became Sweet Potato Souffle for my father’s side of the family’s gatherings. Which meant that both sides of my family then had a chance to enjoy one of my favorite side dishes.
Over the years I’ve lightened up the amount of sugar that I use in this sweet potato portion of this Sweet Potato Casserole. I love the flavor of the sweet potatoes without adding loads of extra sugar and the topping is sweet on its own. If your family prefers sweet potatoes that are extra sweet add 1/2 – 1 cup of sugar to your sweet potato mixture.
I don’t add nutmeg or cinnamon to this Sweet Potato Casserole because those flavors weren’t a part of my granny’s casserole. I feel that they can overpower the dish, but once again add them to your sweet potatoes if you are inclined to.
This recipe is great as a make ahead. Roast the sweet potatoes and mix them in a bowl with the other ingredients. Then make the topping in a separate bowl. Cover both bowls and put them into the refrigerator to hang out until the day that you plan to bake the casserole.
I serve this casserole warm, but my husband eats the leftover casserole like a cold dessert straight from the refrigerator. To each their own. Many people would classify this as a dessert, but in the South we call it a side dish.
I hope that you’ll try this recipe today and leave a comment below. Also, for daily updates follow @lifeabovethecafe on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest.
Sweet Potato Portion:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and spray a casserole dish. I use a 9 x 13 pan so the casserole cooks in less time (usually 30 – 35 minutes). If using a smaller casserole dish it may take 40 – 45 minutes to cook completely.
Note – my prep time of 10 minutes doesn’t include roasting the sweet potatoes. I roast my cleaned and pierced sweet potatoes on a foil lined pan in the oven at 425 degrees for about 45 minutes to an hour. I don’t wrap them in foil. When they feel soft and a knife or fork easily pierces the flesh and meat, they’re finished. I usually roast 4 – 5 medium sweet potatoes. It’s much easier to bake them than trying to cut the firm potato up to boil. If you decide to boil the potatoes don’t over boil them. You want a firm texture so they mash and don’t become watery.
Mix the roasted sweet potatoes up with the other ingredients. I use less sugar than the original 1/2 – 1 cup that lots of recipes call for. Pour the mixture into the greased casserole dish.
Make the streusel topping in a separate bowl. Mix the brown sugar and flour together and then use a fork to cut in the softened butter. Once you have all of the butter mixed into the sugar/flour mixture stir in the chopped pecans. You can substitute the pecans for walnuts if your prefer or leave them out for allergy reasons. Note – margarine will work in place of butter.
Bake the Sweet Potato Souffle uncovered for 30 minutes. The topping should be browned, but will appear soft. It will firm up after removing from the oven and allowing it to sit for about 10 minutes. If using a smaller dish it may take longer than 30 minutes to heat through so make sure to check the center of the sweet potatoes to ensure they are warmed through.
Refrigerate leftovers. This doubles well, but I bake it in two separate pans so the sweet potatoes aren’t too thick.